Forestry News

As a VFA member, you're kept up to date with forestry news through our e-newsletter What's Happening in Virginia Forestry Today.  See our most recent issue below:

   What's Happening in Virginia Forestry Today?

March 21, 2018

Sponsored By:  

ArborGen Ad 


CPS 9th Annual Vegetation Management Workshop

Crop Production Services invites you to attend their two hottest events of the season! On May 17, attend their Vegetation Management Workshop, co-sponsored by VFA. Then meet them on the links on May 18, for a charity golf tournament in support of Cornerstone Revitalization Center. Please download this form for more information on the workshop and click this link to register for the golf tournament. 


In This Issue...

Articles:

What's Happening at VFA?

Governor Northam Sets Special Budget Session for General Assembly

Announcement of Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade for Rural Economic Development

Fires at Turman Tye River, LLC and Enviva

Eastern Panel Manufacturing, Inc. to invest $1 Million in Pittsylvania County

Additional Amendments Made by Governor Northam to Protect Virginia's Clean Water

Retirement of Chief Tooke and Announce of Vicki Christiansen as interim Forest Service Chief

EPA Finalizes "Waters of the United States" Applicability Date

Newly Introduced Legislation that will Aid Forest Landowners

Sidebar items:

VFA Membership Benefits

VFA Welcomes New Members

Contribute to the Virginia Forest Resources PAC Online

Sponsor an Issue of What's Happening...?

Interesting Reads


VFA Membership Benefits

VFA Members receive discounts from the following organizations:

The codes needed to receive these discounts can be accessed by logging into your member profile or by contacting the VFA office. 

VFA Welcomes New Members

VFA is happy to welcome the following new members to our association this month:

  • Jake Ballard
  • William & Josephine Baxter
  • Gunner L. Beverly
  • Hayley Bickford
  • Jack Harrell, Jr. 
  • Matthew Jones
  • Justin Mays
  • Alexandra McClung
  • Phillip Smith
  • Kenneth Townsend
  • Broadwood LLC
  • Goshen Farms LLC
  • Morven Lodging
  • Turman Tye River, LLC

Contribute to the Virginia Forest Resources PAC Online

Influencing public policy is a tough assignment, especially when it comes to our forests. The Virginia Forest Resources Political Action Committee (VaForest PAC) provides a means to educate our policy makers on the importance of forestry to Virginia and gives financial assistance to candidates who recognize and support forestry interests.  You can now contribute to the PAC online by clicking here.


Sponsor an Issue of What's Happening...?

Looking for a way to promote your company/organization while supporting your association? Have a special story you'd like to share with other VFA members? You can do so here! Choose between a feature article or a simple advertisement. Your logo and additional information will appear here. See our Support Us page for additional information.


Interesting Reads

We come across articles every day that spark our interest here at VFA. Click the links below to read two that we would like to share this month:

 

What's Happening at VFA?

We have been busy at VFA this month wrapping up at the General Assembly, finalizing details for the Summit, and supporting all of our VFA-related programs and committees. Take a look at what we have been doing:  

  • Registration for the 2018 Virginia Forestry Summit is now open! If you would like to support the Summit via sponsorship, silent auction donations, or becoming an exhibitor, please donate by clicking here or contacting the VFA office. The final day to register for the Summit is April 10. Register here!
  • As seen in the last issue of our e-news, Executive Director Paul Howe was very busy the first quarter of the New Year traveling to-and-from the General Assembly advocating for forestry. Click here to view the issues that Paul reported on in last month's issue.
  • Have you ever wondered about the behind-the-scenes "magic" that happens to plan and produce VFA's quarterly magazine, Virginia Forests? Members of the Magazine Committee invite you to join them on Tuesday, May 1, at 4:00 p.m. at the Omni Richmond Hotel prior to the Summit Kick-Off Reception to listen and take part in conversations about trending topics as we plan for upcoming issues. Find out how an idea grows into a theme; how potential authors are identified for our feature stories; what are some of the books we'd love to share with our readers, and more. If you are interested in attending, please contact the VFA office for more information. We hope that you will stop by, join us for good conversation, and be part of the magic! (No wand required!)
  • Congratulations to the current President of the Virginia Agribusiness Council Katie Frazier on accepting a new position as Director of External Affairs with the Farm Credit of the Virginias. We wish Katie the best of luck in her new position and look forward to possibly working with her more at her new organization!
  • VFA members Jen Gagnon and Glen Worrell, along with VFA Programs Coordinator Sarah Kammer taught a Tree Farm Inspector Training course to Virginia Tech students in Scott Barrett’s Senior Capstone class on February 13 and 15, as pictured below. The students are learning to write forest management plans and will submit their final plans towards the end of the semester. The students will become active Tree Farm Inspectors upon graduation in May 2018.  

Tree Farm Inspector Training at VT

  • Paul attended the 10th Annual Governor’s Conference on Agricultural Trade co-hosted by Governor Northam, Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS), Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, and the Port of Virginia. Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Bettina Ring speaks highly of the event by saying, "the topics of discussion are timely in our rapidly changing world of trade and foreign policy, and it is more critical than ever that Virginia maintain its status as a powerhouse of trade on the Eastern Seaboard. Agriculture and forestry, our largest private industries, are dependent on these markets and we are working hard to ensure continued opportunity.” Pictured below is Governor Northam speaking at the conference:

Governor Northam speaking at 10th Annual Conference on Agricultural Trade

  • During the last week of the General Assembly, Paul provided donuts for a meeting of the Congressional Sportsmen's Caucus, whose meeting is pictured below. He also hand-delivered invitations for the 2018 Virginia Forestry Summit receptions to all 140 members of the General Assembly. 

Sportsmens caucus

  • The Virginia Forestry Association, along with SFI and Virginia Tree Farm Foundation, sponsored and exhibited at Virginia Forest Landowner Education Program's 14th Annual Woods & Wildlife Conference on February 24. Over 200 landowners attended the conference in Culpeper, learning about a variety of topics ranging from timber operations on private lands, to forest pollinators. VFA Programs Coordinator Sarah Kammer represented VFA and Tree Farm, while VFA member Jim Kuykendall exhibited for SFI. Pictured below is VFA's booth and conference participants:

Woods & Wildlife Booth Woods & Wildlife Conference

  • VFA works with North American Forest Partnership (NAFP) in promoting information on forestry practices via technology and social media. NAFP has been working steadily to create animated videos educating the public on forestry and informing them on the important of keeping forests diverse and maintained. Please visit our Facebook page to view these videos and stay tuned for more in the upcoming months.
  • VFA Programs Coordinator Sarah Kammer and VFA Events & Communications Coordinator Elizabeth Buhl attended this month's meeting of the Virginia Board of Forestry, introducing themselves to the Board and informing them of their roles at VFA, as well as learning what the Board has been working on and how it pertains to our work at VFA.  

Governor Northam Sets Special Budget Session for General Assembly

 After adjourning on March 10, members of the General Assembly will meet on April 11, for a special session to complete their work on the Commonwealth's budget. Several forestry related items hang in the balance pending completion of the budget including full appropriations for the Reforestation of Timberlands Program. VFA will continue to provide input on such issues. To learn more, please read the official press release from the Office of the Governor. 


Announcement of Deputy Secretary of Commerce and Trade for Rural Economic Development 

Cassidy Rasnick joins the Northam administration from the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, where she managed the economic development efforts of two of the Commonwealth’s largest industries, agriculture and forestry. Cassidy previously served as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry under Governor McAuliffe. 


Fires at Turman Tye River, LLC and Enviva

There were two fires that occurred this past month within our Virginia forestry community. A fire at Turman Tye River Lumber Yard started in a piece of outdoor equipment in Arrington, causing an estimated $500,000 in damages, including the destruction of a building and its stored lumber and equipment. A fire also occurred at Enviva's deep-water marine terminal in Chesapeake. The fire was quickly controlled and the terminal is being returned to safe, full commercial operations. For more information, please read related news articles on the Turman Lumber and Enviva fires. 


Eastern Panel Manufacturing, Inc. to Invest $1 Million in Pittsylvania County

Governor Ralph Northam announced last month that Eastern Panel Manufacturing, Inc., a custom plywood manufacturer, will be expanding its manufacturing operation, creating fifteen new jobs within the company. Governor Northam praises Virginia's manufacturing industry on its growth saying, "manufacturers like Eastern Panel that continue to invest in Virginia demonstrate the advantages of our favorable operating costs, strategic location, a superior transportation network, and strong talent pool." To learn more about the investment and expansion, please read this press release from the Office of the Governor. 


Additional Amendments Made by Governor Northam to Protect Virginia's Clean Water

Governor Ralph Northam recently announced additional powers to expand Virginia's ability to protect clean water, especially when pertaining to activities associated with the construction of natural gas pipelines. To learn more, please read the official press release conveying the Governor's thoughts on the amendments and describing his recent collaboration with the Virginia Department of Equality. 


Retirement of Chief Tooke and Announcement of Vicki Christiansen as Interim Forest Service Chief

Head of U.S. Forest Services Chief Tony Tooke resigned from office earlier this month after the filing of internal misconduct violations against him. Vicki Christiansen was appointed by Secretary Perdue to step in as interim Forest Service Chief. VFA is fortunate to be having Vicki as a speaker at this year's Virginia Forestry Summit. Please click here to learn more about Vicki Christiansen and her thoughts on the issue at hand. 


EPA Finalizes "Waters of the United States" Applicability Date

The United States Environmental Protection Agency is taking action in providing certainty to the definition of "Waters of the United States" as adopted in 2015 by the previous administration. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt signed a final regulation delaying the current definition for two years allowing the EPA to work on revising the definition within that time frame. To learn more about this issue, please read the EPA's official press release


Newly Introduced Legislation that will Aid Forest Landowners

A member of the Forest Landowner Association worked with his U.S. Representative to write and introduce legislation moving to eliminate the "basis limitation rule." Eliminating this rule will allow any individual or business who grows trees with the intent to sell to recover after a catastrophic event. Please click here to learn more about this legislation and find out how you can take action to support the cause. 


 Dogwood Tree

For more information on forestry news or other legislative items, and if you have any questions about VFA's representation of forestry interests at the General Assembly, please contact Executive Director Paul Howe.

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Virginia Forestry Association

3808 Augusta Ave.

Richmond, VA 23230

804-278-8733

vfa@vaforestry.org

www.vaforestry.org